President of Botswana Mokgweetsi Masisi’s priorities is to make Botswana a conference destination. Masisi made the announcement on 27 June 2019 at Avani Hotel, where he had hosted a glittering state banquet for Rwanda’s president, Paul Kagame and his wife, Jeannette.
Kagame was on a two-day state visit, the first-ever by a Rwandese president to Botswana. No timeline has been given as to when this milestone should’ve been achieved.
A series of sensitisation and educational events – mostly targeting key stakeholders in government and the hospitality industry – have been set in motion to prepare the ground for this desire. They are led by the Ministry of International Affairs and Cooperation in the country.
Rwanda, which 25 years ago suffered a debilitating genocide in which over 800, 000 people died, is today ranked the second most popular destination in Africa for hosting international conferences and events. The country was decorated with this accolade by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) in May 2019.
Among some of the attributes for Rwanda’s sterling economic performance include the prudent management and the continuous improvement on the ease of doing business, which has “considerably boosted” the country’s creditworthiness.
Masisi said it is not “surprising” therefore that the latest World Bank Ease of Doing Business Report of 2018 ranks Rwanda at position 29 out of 190 economies, which explains among other reasons why the country continues to attract high-value investors.
Botswana hopes to tap into Rwanda’s experiences and hopefully join her “ranks very soon” as she embarks on the journey to becoming a conference destination of choice, Masisi said.